Saturday, 31 May 2008
Friday, 30 May 2008
Thursday, 29 May 2008
Wednesday, 28 May 2008
It's also got a thriving DIY mentality.
The land behind the old school was a wilderness for years and a team of locals got together and said "Let's make a garden where people can come and play with their kids and bring a picnic if they want to"
The annual "Open Garden" this month marked its completion and it's just so cool.
The centrepiece is a fan-garden, with a semi-circle of colour-focused flower beds emanating from gravel seating area.
They've also got a herb garden, with medicinal and culinary beds and they're busy building a covered seating area for those damp days.
Tuesday, 27 May 2008
Bad-Kreuznach - about 30 minutes from Mainz and where I've been incarcerated for the past 3 weeks - has some fascinating sons and daughters.
Eberhard Anheuser, who went on to make Milwaukee famous
Johann Faust, the alchemist on whom the Faust tale is said to be based.
Marcel Proust visited the town with his mother in 1895. (What a nice lad...)
Frank the Potter was christened in the church of St Paul, pictured above
And Karl Marx married Jenny von Westphalen in the same church a couple of years earlier.
1843, to be precise
Monday, 26 May 2008
Sunday, 25 May 2008
Saturday, 24 May 2008
In addition to the iron work, there were milliners, jewelery designers, woodworkers, potters of all persuasions and sundry others, displaying their creations. So many pretty, shiny things.
Friday, 23 May 2008
Thursday, 22 May 2008
Wednesday, 21 May 2008
Tuesday, 20 May 2008
Monday, 19 May 2008
And the populace and the gladiators of Moguntium V did wail bitterly and chant in chorus "Oh Lord, why must you punish us so? Could Thou not have cast magic on the gladiators of Hoffenheimus and given them two left feet, just for yesterday?"
And the Lord appeared before them and they showed great fear and hid their faces from Him.
And the Lord spake thus:
"Look at thee alll! Thou truly art a worthless lot and remindeth Me of the parable that Saint Peter doth relate."
"A man cometh to the Pearly Gates and saith " Ah, St Peter, mate. Sorry I'm somewhat tardy, squire, but I was delayed in getting here, what with helping old ladies across the road, and popping into church to do a few Hail Marys and sorting the rubbish into bio-degradable and otherwise, not to mention separating paper, tins and plastic"
And Saint Peter said " Thou toad. I know thee for years, thou that stoppeth not for children on the zebra crossing and parketh in mobility challenged parking spaces and flicks thy fag ends out of the car window onto the road and jumps queues, elbows and all, at Aldimus market. Thou only started on getting brownie points when thou heard the Grim Reaper rattling his chains in the neighbourhood. Get thee forth and try yourweasel words on a more gullible bugger"
And the people looked blank-faced, not having got the jist of the Lord's parable.
And the Lord saith "My oath, thou art a thick lot."
"Thou thinketh that just by knocking the spots off Saint Paulus 5:1 in the last battle, thou shall be welcomed into the Heaven of the Divisionum Primus and wallow in the richness of its fertile fields and pig out on milk and honey? Nay, it worketh not like that one bit"
"Did thee not think to pull out thy digit in the battle against Allemania Aachen in thy own coliseum on the Via Broco but a week ago? Or Erzgebirge Aue, I mean 3-3, what were thee thinking? And thou wart bloody lucky against Kaiserslautern, too. People doth always leaveth things to the last minute, just like the sodding unicorns on the Ark"
And Gladiator Gunkelus diid mutter "This bastard's worse than the Prophet Kloppo", ignorant of the fact that the Lord heareth and seeth all.
And the Lord was angry and said "Oi! Gladiator Gunkelus! Dost thou not know that I am the Lord God Almighty, who heareth and seeth all. And Gladiator Gunkelus was meek and saw the error of his ways and said "Oh, shit, I'm in for it now")
And the Lord said "Verily thou art deeply in for it, Gunkelus, thee who hung around the pitch for 90 minutes in the battle against Allemania Aachen like a spare whatsit at a matrimus and then declare "we shall have to pull out all the stops at the next battle" Dost thou not realise that the patrons of the Via Broco do dig deep into their toga pockets each week to pay you piles of denari to do EXACTLY THAT?.At every battle?
"If thou dost not shape up, I shall cast thee like thy namesake into the lions' den and this time there shall not be some softy Leo with a thorn in his paw so that thee can play the hero. Nay, thou shalt be cast into the Ultra pen and see how thou liketh that!"
And the Prophet Kloppo did become impatient and saith
"Sod this for a game of gladiators. I'm off to a new coliseum, where they will ply me with sacrificial virgins and caskets of dosh and roll out the red carpet"
And the Lord was verily angry with the Prophet Kloppo and said "I am the Lord God Almighty, who heareth and seeth all, so just hang on a minute, mate. Thy halo is sorely tarnished, for thou hast truly cocked up this season, especially when choosing reinforcements at critical phases in the battle. I mean, what were you thinking of, sport? Leaving thy best galdiators festering on the bench in the battle of Colonia?"
And the Prophet Kloppo was meek and hung his head in shame, for he knew that the Lord was right (And he just hoped that there weren't too many others about who heareth and seeth all like the Lord...)
And the Lord did continue to wax wrath and saith, with an eye firmly fixed on Senator Christianus Heidelus and Presidentus Haraldus Strutzius
"And thou villains knoweth full well that thou hast pulleth the wool over the eyes of virtually everyone for thy new Coliseum Cofacius in Bretzenheimus."
"But I am the Lord God Almighty, who heareth and seeth all just in case thou hast forgotten and I know full well that thou hast indulged in some very dodgy creative accounting and that the populace of Moguntium will be sorely burdened for generations to come to pay for your graven image."
"And it shall come to pass that an ecological survey shall determine that the graven image of the Coliseum Cofacius will block the flow of the good ethers to the populace of Moguntia and it shall not be built and thou shalt be condemned to spend your Fridays, Sundays and Mondays at the Coliseum Via Broco"
And thus did end the military campaign of the Divisionum Secundus of the year of our Lord MMVIII.
Not very well for all concerned.
Sunday, 18 May 2008
Saturday, 17 May 2008
Thought the least I could do was to buy her a coffee at the Tin Shed On Wheels before I change my identity, have plastic surgery and disappear to South America on tonight's flight, so off we toddled/hobbled to the market.
Great to get a decent cup of coffee from nice people, even better to drink in the company of someone as cool as Helen.
On second thoughts, I think I'll stay after all.
(Anyone want a seat on the 23:30 flight to Rio tonight...?)
Friday, 16 May 2008
Thursday, 15 May 2008
This is a reconstruction of one of the Roman boats whose ruins were found during the early stages of laying the foundations for the extension of the Hilton in Mainz. Naturally, jb has already blogged about the discovery and the ensuing formation of the Museum of Roman Shipbuilding on Neutorstrasse (where this picture was taken).
Wednesday, 14 May 2008
Tuesday, 13 May 2008
Despite the chaos these two apparently innocent looking children wrought on our lives during their visit, I miss them terribly.
PS. Strasbourg rocks! I highly recommend a visit, if you are in the neighbourhood.
Monday, 12 May 2008
Alchemilla --- Lady's Mantel is a definite favourite.
Easy to grow, good ground cover, medicinal benefits for female plumbing.
The Latin name means "little magical one", referring to the way that dew gathers in droplets on the surface of the leaves.
Either that, or people thought that the dew turned into globules of silver.
Think I prefer the second version, actually....
Sunday, 11 May 2008
The REAL reason for going there is Dätwyls, a wine bar run by Heiko Dettweiler and his wfe Heike.
Found out about it after Birgit, Star Journalist from over the road, did a "A Year in the Life" series for the local rag a few years back, following a family farm through the seasonal cycle.
There's not a lot that can beat sitting in the courtyard on a late spring evening, enjoying the wines and food, playing with the Labradors and chatting with Heiko.
Definitely one of the Good Guys
Saturday, 10 May 2008
'Bad' - 'Bath' in German is a dead giveaway and it's the sort of place where High Society went to 'take the waters' in better times.
These days it's full of decrepit quadrupeds learning to walk again.
But it's still a very attractive place, just oozing understated elegance, with a big park and a flash hotel and the River Nahe runing through it.
The river in fact divides into a raging torrent (which disappears around the back of aforementioned flash hotel) and a genteel stream that runs through the town before they reunite and charge off downstream together to conflue in the Rhine.
And to think that the Gummit's paying for me to have 3 weeks vacation here.....
Friday, 9 May 2008
So it's the Bad Kreuznach Daily Photo until Helen's back.
This is what the inhabitants of Northern England must have felt like when the Vikings invaded back in the middle of the last millennium...
Yesterday afternoon, there was a roar of unmuffled exhausts and 200 vintage car nutters from the Netherlands descended on the city and proceeded to rape, pillage and create mayhem to their hearts' content. (Actually, they mostly sat around eating cheese, drinking coffee and being exceptionally pleasant, which is what Dutch people tend to do).
As well as clean the points and plugs, top up the oil, look for leaks and the other sorts of things you do if you've ever had an old car. (Tell me about it...)
Bad-Kreuznach is the second to last stage of the Tulpen Rally that runs 3000km through France, Switzerland and Germany and it's all pretty serious stuff, with the cars packed with stopwatches, calculators and Satnavs.
Some choice cars - Mini Cooper S, Lotus Elans, more Austin Healy 3000s than you could shake a stick at, Sunbeam Tigers (used to be a sedate little semi-sports car until Carrol Shelby squeezed a 4.7 litre V8 under the bonnet and turned it into something that gets 0 mpg and gives you nosebleeds when you drop the clutch
Plus my very first car - an MGA.
Except this guy's modified his with disc brakes, a 1.8 litre engine and a 5 speed gearbox.
And to think that I sold mine for £25....
Thursday, 8 May 2008
Wednesday, 7 May 2008
Tuesday, 6 May 2008
Monday, 5 May 2008
Sunday, 4 May 2008
Saturday, 3 May 2008
Friday, 2 May 2008
Thursday, 1 May 2008
Here's one from the 5th floor of the St Vincenz hospital..
They used to be called cumulo nimbus (or something quite similar), nimbus coming from the Latin meaning "a luminous cloud or halo surrounding a supernatural being or saint".
That would be Ms jb, then, doing a wonderful job of looking after me in my hour of need in the abattoir.
Given that there's so many around, though, they then got renamed cumulo numerous, causing all sorts of problems between people who spell properly and the Americans (who supposedly wanted to spell it numeruz), so it got simplified to cumulo numbers.
I think that's the story, anyway.
The usual suspects are on board, butI can't get the links working from this medieval hospice.